April / May 2013By: John FreisingerVolume 11 Number 2
Within our society there exists a unique culture that thrives on the changes in the world. For them change is the portent of opportunity. They thrive on failure and exist in the underserved, underutilized and underappreciated markets often avoided by large corporations. They are disruptive companies, with disruptive solutions creating disruptive products. Welcome the rise of the entrepreneur, the Disruptive Class.
February / March 2013By: John FreisingerVolume 11 Number 1
Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) were originally developed by NASA to help describe the maturity of an invention or concept. The lowest level, TRL One, is an idea or observation. The top of the scale, TRL Nine, would describe something that is usable in the field, or in NASA’s mission, usable in space. The TRL system has been adopted by many research agencies such as the departments of energy and defense, the European Space Agency and the FAA.
December 2012 / January 2013By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 6
The Jornada del Muerto is a 100-mile stretch of dry, rocky, flat land in southern New Mexico that confronted early explorers and missionaries moving north from Mexico toward the legendary Seven Cities of Gold. In Spanish the trail name literally means “The Route of the Dead Man” due to the lack of water, unpredictable terrain and extreme temperatures. Despite the trail’s sinister reputation thousands of travelers chose to undertake the seven to ten-day journey because of the promise of riches beyond. Many of the lessons learned by those early explorers are directly applica
October / November 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 5
Every September the apple trees in my back yard begin to yield their annual harvest of red, ripe apples. This year I have a bumper crop, which also means a huge number of windfall apples that I spend innumerable hours cleaning up and hauling away. Added to that number are the “organic” apples, which are riddled with worms because I have forgotten to spray the trees in late spring. In all I manage to harvest about 2 bushels of beautiful, unblemished apples for every 400-600 pounds of barely useable apples that I haul to the dump.
August / September 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 4
“What business are you in?” Answering that question seems to flummox many of the frustrated entrepreneurs that I encounter and perhaps provides some insight into why they are struggling. What seems to be a simple question often ends up being a very complex answer. But should it be?
June / July 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 3
At a recent venture forum I watched as seven aspiring entrepreneurs promoted their funding opportunities for consideration by the assembled investors. Two of them stood out. Not for their technology or for their business strategy but rather because of a single phrase. Both presenters, endeavoring to demonstrate to the audience their drive to succeed, proudly announced, “Failure is not an option!”
April / May 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 2
It’s like Facebook, you know. Kinda does the same stuff but more local and better. It uses algorithmic optimization through its SQL interconnectivity for SEO. We’re gonna market it virally and everybody is gonna wanna be part of it.” Over the last few years I have heard countless variations of this awkward theme from entrepreneurs seeking funding from venture capitalists. The problem I am describing is not the business strategy, though that could use some work; it is the paucity of information conveyed in the description of the investment opportunity.
February / March 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 10 Number 1
Entrepreneurial success is not a haphazard occurrence, it is the result of focused, disciplined activities in support of a goal. The undisciplined process of creating and running a business requires that the founder develop and maintain a skill set of practices that will increase the likelihood of success. There are five disciplines that effective entrepreneurs use over and over in their attempt to bring order to the chaos of the startup.
December 2011 / January 2012By: John FreisingerVolume 9 Number 6
Ron Popeil. You may not remember the name but I am certain that you are aware of the innovative products marketed by Ronco, Inc. His gadgets include the Pocket Fisherman and the Inside-the-Egg Egg Scrambler.
October / November 2011By: John FreisingerVolume 9 Number 5
I agree with Linus Pauling who said, “The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas.” In my experience not every idea is a good idea and not every good idea is a profitable idea. So the best way to have a profitable idea is to explore lots of ideas. Given our renewed national emphasis on innovation it is probably a good time to take another look at the process of creating ideas and innovation, brainstorming.